Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered…
It is both singular and instructive to observe that this expression, which is one of the richest and sweetest in revelation, is found in closest connection with language of severity, rebuke, and threatening. The contrast enhances the preciousness of the doctrine. Children of wrath become members of the Divine family, rejoice in a Father's love, and inherit a Father's home.
I. THE LIGHT HERE CAST UPON THE NATURE AND CHARACTER OF THE SUPREME. It is a gospel needed by our age as much as by any that has ever existed - the tidings that the living God is the Father of the sons of men.
1. He is the living God; neither an abstraction nor a law, nor a Being uninterested in his works or indifferent to the fate of his spiritual creation.
2. He is the Father; which is something more, for it denotes his personal regard, his affectionate disposition, his benignant and bountiful care. To take any lower view than this of the Divine Being is to go back from the enlightened teaching of revelation to the effete and degraded paganism of the past.
II. THE LIGHT HERE CAST UPON THE CALLING AND DESTINY OF MAN.
1. Here is witness to our spiritual nature. This language could not be applied to the irrational and, unmoral brutes. Only man, among the inhabitants of earth, is capable of the dignity and blessedness involved in Divine sonship.
2. Here is witness to the transforming power of religion. The context shows that sinners have forfeited all claim to a hallowed relationship such as is here described, with its privileges and immunities. The grace of God, especially as revealed in the gospel of Christ, secures adoption. Christians are "children of God by faith in Christ Jesus;" they have "received the Spirit of adoption."
3. Here is witness to the duties of the new and spiritual life. What dignity clothes the sons of the living God! What relationships, what prospects, what services, are theirs! Surely it is obvious that those so honored are summoned, and are bound, to cherish filial sentiments, to render filial obedience, to offer filial devotion. A holy Father looks for holy sons. - T.
Parallel VersesKJV: Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered; and it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the living God.
WEB: Yet the number of the children of Israel will be as the sand of the sea, which can't be measured nor numbered; and it will come to pass that, in the place where it was said to them, 'You are not my people,' they will be called 'sons of the living God.'